After Affect of Boxing ! Dementia Pugilistica

Dementia Pugilistica

Sport is considered to be an optimal effective way for people to keep their bodies in shape, healthy and full of life. There are various sports like running, swimming, fitness etc. that fully reflect and support this point of view. But when we talk about sport it is essential to say that many people being in sport, especially those who make a professional career are the subjects to different types of injuries that may affect not only physical but also mental health. One of such sports is a proffesional boxing. The repeated blows involving rotational force which are received by boxers may lead to serious diseases that are difficult to be treated. Nowadays dementia pugilistica is a top frequent disease among representatives of this sports.

Dementia pugilistica (DP), also known as “boxer’s dementia”, “punch drunk syndrome” or chronic traumatic encephalopathy, is a neurodegenerative disease that develops due to repeated concussions or other traumatic blows to a head. Frequent concussions may lead to permanent brain damage causing mental disorders. It takes a certain period of time before any symptoms of the disease arise. That’s why sometimes it is hard to diagnose DP.

A boxer who has dementia pugilistica may show a wide range of physical and mental symptoms. The first symptoms of so called “punch drunk syndrome” are affective, motor and personality changes. The affective changes include euphoria, depression, hypomania, emotional instability. For example, some boxers may feel apathetic, then become withdrawn or deeply depressed. Motor symptoms are characterized by dysarthria, incoordination and intention tremor. Other changes can be described as exacerbation of premorbid personality traits, psychomotor retardation, childishness, aggression, suspiciousness, loquacity, and restlessness.

Then dementia pugilistica progress to a second stage that is distinguished by parkinsonism and an accentuation of the psychiatric symptoms. Rigidity, bradykinesia and other extrapyramidal signs start to develop. There is a difficulty with impulse control, disinhibition, inappropriateness, excessive sexual demands and outbursts of anger and aggression. There can occur morbid jealousy and a suspicion of spousal infidelity or a sensitivity to the effects of alcohol. Memory difficulty starts at this stage.

The last stage is final and can be defined as an absolute dementia pugilistica disease. There goes a decrease in cognitive functioning along with symptoms of pyramidal tract illness and gait ataxia (lack of muscle coordination). A boxer has a prominent slowness of mind thinking. His speech becomes unarticulated. His memory gets worse. Moreover, a frontal-executive behavior undergoes nonreversible changes.

This problem seemed to appear long ago when boxing just started to be a human activity. In the early 19th century boxers savety turned out to be an important issue because more and more boxers had neurotic effects of boxing. In 1928 a forensic pathologist Dr. Harrison S. Martland proved that professional boxers suffered from brain injuries and named the disease as “punch drunk syndrome” (MedLink Neurology, 2012).

Afterwards many investigations were made to analyze dimentia pugilistica, find the reasons of its appearance and create an effective …
Posted by: Tom Reinert

Share the joy
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •